Part 2- Loopholes that waste your budget: Search Network Partners and the Display Network opt-in

In my opinion the beauty of digital marketing is that we are able to target our audience very specifically: once we have found the best paths to buyers, we can hit them again and again. And that´s the issue with opting in on the search network partners (SNP) and the display network: we do not know the path and we can´t conciously seek it out or optimize it.

Let´s break down the two networks, because our reasons for the opt-out differ (let me surprise you at the end about Display, hey hey!) and let´s assume that our campaigns were already running and we have some nice amount of data collected.

Search Network partners

The first thing I would take a look at, is the cost per conversion. Is it competitive to the CPA of the rest of my campaign?

Here you can see this:

  • all campaigns
  • segment
  • by Network (with search partners)
  • ét voilá, you can see now the different networks under each campaign!

This works also on all the other levels like ad groups and ads, but since you can only opt-out on campaign level, we would look at the campaigns over all.

Make sure to view a relevant time frame, at least 30 days or more, depending on your ad spend.

You can switch SNP off at:

  • choose the right campaign
  • settings
  • networks
  • Search Network Partners – untick the box
  • save
  • …and gone is the gold digger!

SNP and Display for Youtube Campaigns

At a Youtube Campaign you can segment by Display Network, YT Search and YT Videos. To decide if you want to opt-out or not, you can of course take a look at the number of conversions. But because it can be difficult to generate hard conversions, like sales, with Youtube campaigns, you´ll have to take a look at your soft conversions such as ‘time on site’ etc.

And if you didn´t set those up (at tools & settings -> conversions), check out these Analytics collums in combination with the network segmentation to make a qualified decision:

If you can´t see these metrics, then you have to connect your Analytics account to Google Ads and import the website data.

Switching off the Display opt-in

Ok, so here is the surprise I was baiting you with in my intro: there is no good reason to ever keep the Display opt-in in your search campaign! None. Because we just can´t direct where they are going to show.

Even if you have tons of budget left over every day, I would still always want control over the targeting options, so I can copy and paste them whenever I want to scale. So if you have the luxury of way too much budget left over, just set up a seperate Display campaign with different targeting options in differnt adgroups to see what works best.

Did you ever see one of those text ads squeezed into a banner ad? Remember how ugly they are? What did you think of the company the ad was from? Do you get my point?

Just switch it off.

Also good to know:

Both networks can be responsible for a very low CTR (like under 2% would make me really worry). Of course: the Display network naturally has a way lower CTR because people are not actively looking for something that you offer, you just randomly walking around hollering and offering them.

To take a look if this is case, segment the networks on campaign level again. If the average CTR of your Search Network is around 5% or higher, you’re doing good.

Again, I hope this helps you save a lot of money, so that maybe one day you are so rich that you just simply fly me in to consult you personally about your Google Ads or Youtube campaigns. Until then, please keep reading and commenting.

3 Replies to “Part 2- Loopholes that waste your budget: Search Network Partners and the Display Network opt-in”

  1. So would you recommend doing the same for any ads solution? Like Facebook gives you the option to use their partners as well for a wider and faster reach. Do you feel that the average action would be less, even for non sales-actions?
    Beautiful content! Thanks!

    1. Thanks Tiago, really appreciate it!
      No, I would look at a longer time period and see if their partners brought in any conversions and to what price. If it´s way above the average CPA, I would take it out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *